Debilitating injuries with long-term consequences can result from insidious damage accumulating through everyday work and leisure activities. There is a whole generation of prematurely aged people out there, walking wounded on sticks, frames and body supports with bad backs and crippled hand, elbow, knee and foot joints.
Most of these injuries are caused at work or play by pushing the limits on the body’s physical capacity. This applies equally to hard-working professional contractors, devoted farmers, gardeners and DIY amateurs who drill, saw, hammer, mow, sand and generally embrace modern power tools, as it does to workers in Construction, Manufacturing, Mining, Forestry, Entertainment, Transport, Retail, Warehousing or Healthcare who perform their tasks for years without back supports, anti-vibration/ impact gloves, insoles or heat stress cooling products.
These injuries can be prevented to a large extent with proper use of PPE or personal protection equipment. OTB Products brings some of the world’s most advanced body care products to the Australian market.
PPE/ bodycare products are in a very real sense, akin to an insurance policy, and selecting the right product should be approached the same way.
It is important to avoid badly made back supports or unapproved anti-vibration gloves as they can cause more damage. Some back supports on the market actually invite muscle atrophy because they support the back even when it doesn’t need it, but don’t perform when it does, frequently triggering back injury. Similarly, a great number of anti-vibration gloves recently tested in safety-conscious Denmark were found to make the vibration worse by magnifying it, resulting in damaged nerves and tendons.
Top tips for selecting personal protection equipment:
- Credibility of the product or vendor: Ensure the PPE comes with international PPE approvals and/or clinical validation
- Compare products feature for feature, value for value, over the product’s projected lifespan
- Check value for money: When it involves safety, health and body care, cheap is seldom good, and often harmful
- Avoid using badly made or unapproved PPE as they can actually cause more damage
- When calculating the cost of approved and clinically proven products, factor in cost studies on durability, employee or personal downtime, lost productivity, retraining injured staff, compensation payouts, insurance premiums and duty of care to employees
Anyone in an active occupation must wear a back support regardless of age. Good back supports have been proven across the board to reduce back injuries caused by bending, falling, tripping, twisting and those other unexpected events that happen every day. Use a back support in conjunction with the six safe steps to lifting (detailed on OTB packaging) to reduce the chances of a back injury.
Workers using power equipment such as chainsaws, jackhammers, concrete cutters, compactors, grinders, power tools, rattle guns and other vibrating equipment must wear suitable PPE. Continuous vibration can damage to hands and arms as well as ears, leading to serious consequences. Protection is available from OTB Products in the form of excellent anti-vibration gloves and PPE, which are Standards Approved and clinically proven to reduce vibration.
OTB offers complete ranges of anti-vibration products, impact-reducing products, gloves, wrist supports, knee protectors and footwear insoles. The products are the result of a collaboration between two market leaders, Body Glove, a company with 50+ years of sportswear and wetsuit experience, and Chase’s, which is internationally respected for its clinically based PPE design and patented G’fom, G’pact and acupressure technologies.